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Old 09-24-2012, 10:52 AM   #76
1FSTREX
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Member#: 109348
Join Date: Mar 2006
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Old 09-30-2012, 10:29 PM   #77
1FSTREX
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DISCLAIMER: In no way should my comments be taken as fact. I am no expert nor am I a certified mechanic or subject matter expert. This is based off the knowledge I have learned over the years and nothing more. This review is also based off of how I will be using these coilovers and my current set up.

INITIAL REVIEW OF: Fortune Auto 500 Coilovers with Swift Spring Upgrade

Coilover Details:
- 500 Series
- Front FA Camber Plates
- Rear Cusco Camber Plates
- 9kgf/mm front (504lbs/inch) Swift Spring
- 8kgf/mm rear (448lbs/inch) Swift Spring
- 25 Increment Dampening Adjustment

Price Paid:
- $1540 shipped

Purchased from:
- XTR (Titan) Performance

Reason for Purchase:
- I wanted a good budget coilover that I could learn on for AutoXing before upgrading to a higher end system. The Fortune Auto lineup has a great reputation and their customer service is second to none. In addition, their coilovers offer the basic functions and reliability I wanted for a fraction of the price.

How the coilovers will be used:
- I only daily drive my car on the weekends and usually only once or twice a month. I mainly use my car for autocross so I have my coilovers set up mainly for performance.

Current configuration:
- ” of preload in the front (630lbs/inch)
- 3/8” of preload in the rear (616lbs/inch)
- 5 clicks from full hard in the front
- 0 clicks from full hard in the rear
- Combined with front and rear whiteline sway bars

Daily Driving Characteristics:
- *NOTE* Please remember I have my car set up for autocross so my impressions of DD might be different then someone not set up for autocross. I have probably put about 300 city daily driving miles on the coilovers and about 400 highway daily driving miles on the coilovers. The FA coils are very stiff and with dampening on full hard there isn’t much give, which I like due to my needs. When the dampening is turned to more soft it makes the DDing characteristics a lot more barable. The 9k front 8k rear set up is a good DD choice for most people. The coilovers do make noise and a lot of people have had “unbearable” noise. Me personally, I get a pop here and there but its not too bad. They are coilovers and stiff as heck so I understand they are going to make noise. The coilovers will raise NVH but I like it. They do pretty darn good on the highway, even on my stiff settings. With dampening more soft, and the stiff springs, if you hit a series of bumps in the road you can et a pretty good bounce going. With that said, I have never felt like my car was out of control, just a little annoying more then anything. Other then that, I have been very happy with their driving characteristics.

Autocross Characteristics:
- This is where the coilovers really shine (IMO). What a huge improvement over the stock struts with Tanabe springs. They are a lot stiffer and translate to handling a lot better on the AutoX course. One problem I ran into was with how stiff the coilovers were in combination with the rear sway bar. With the coilovers set to full hard and the RSB set to full hard, I lift my inner rear wheel around every corner and wigged the rear diff out. Once I adjusted my RSB to softer it worked a lot better. I have put two AutoX days on these coilovers with about 15 to 20 runs total on them and they are still going great. The Swift spring upgrade is great, I have never used the stock FA springs but I can say the Swift springs are awesome! The dampening adjustments really do work; I can definitely feel the difference when I adjust it. But I have found out that these work best on full hard in the rear and slightly softer in the front (for me). The camber plates on these work very well and the upper ball joints make coil movement a lot smoother. One of the best features is the ability to set preload and adjust ride height independently. These are not some cheap BR coilovers, these coilovers offer a lot of adjustability for a fraction of the price. I couldn’t be happier with them. What is nice is that they are a lot smaller so they allow the ability to use a lot wider wheels and tires.

First time out of the box:


Stock with Tanabe GF210 vs FA 500:


Front Installed:


Rear Installed:


Showing how stiff they are:


Action Shot:
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Old 10-04-2012, 04:36 PM   #78
1FSTREX
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I spend the morning at Tire Pros in Folsom, CA getting my car corner balanced and aligned. Don’t let the name fool you, Tire Pros is an amazing shop and dose a lot of work beyond tires. I believe all Tire Pros are independently owned so I can’t say all the Tire pros are as good as the one I go to but the one in Folsom, CA is second to none; they even worked on my Lotus.



Before the corner balance we were looking at a corner balance split of 795 lbs. The split was about a 62%/38% split, no wonder why I couldn’t turn left! After the corner balance we got it down to a 1lbs corner balance split! That still wasn’t enough for Tire Pros; they wanted to get the left to right splits at a good number. Before the corner balance, LF to RF split was 354lbs/LR to RR split was 441 lbs. After the corner balance, LF to RF split is 51lbs/LR to RR split is 50lbs. Again pretty happy with those numbers. Here is a snap shot of the corner balance screen when we were all said and done.



After the corner balance we went onto the alignment. We dialed my rears into 2.4deg and my fronts to 2.1deg. This was about where I had them with my garage alignment and we didn’t want to move them too much because the wear pattern on the sidewalls of my tires seemed really good. We also set the front to toe out a little, -0.08. We also set toe in a little in the rears at 0.04. I cant wait to go try the new settings out! I didn’t want to do it all at once but since the car was there and it was in the air I figured we would go ahead and do it. I also got my free set of Hoosier A6s mounted to the new Miro 398 wheels. Have to say, they look pretty bad ass.

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Old 10-07-2012, 03:23 PM   #79
1FSTREX
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Yesterday was a Corvette Club hosted autocross at the Wings and Wheels event at the Rio Vista Airport. About 70 cars came out and it was ran extremely well. The track was massive and very high speed. I think i hit about 90mph, the fastest car of the day hit about 120mph. The track zig zagged through two runways and a taxiway. Gravel was a HUGE problem, it was everywhere and a lot of the RWD vettes just couldnt keep traction. The Subi ate them all alive! I dont have the results yet but i think i did pretty good. I had the corner balance and alignment done before this weekend and DAMN did it make a difference. The car is so well balanced now and turns so effortlessly. Mickle is going to kill me but i threw the slicks on. With all the gravel i just didnt want to ruin my street tires, ive already killed the shoulders enough. The slicks definitely made a difference as well but they do hide your mistakes. Luckily though through the feedback i have gotten on here and what i have learned i knew almost all the mistakes i was making and tried to correct them as i went. I had passengers in my car a lot of the time so i couldnt focus 100% but i still had an absolutely blast at the event. Some cool videos below, had a pretty awesome spin out in to the field that absolutely covered the inside of my car with dust and hay.

Lets start out with a few pictures from the event.








Here are the videos from the event, forgot to turn on my camera for the first run Run 5 has the awesome spin out!




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Old 10-25-2012, 01:16 PM   #80
1FSTREX
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Member#: 109348
Join Date: Mar 2006
Chapter/Region: BAIC
Location: Vacationing in Afghanistan
Vehicle:
05 STI
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Old 07-25-2013, 10:51 AM   #81
1FSTREX
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Member#: 109348
Join Date: Mar 2006
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Location: Vacationing in Afghanistan
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Well it's been awhile NASIOC. I've been busy enjoying myself on a sunny vacation in Afghanistan!

I miss my STI dearly! Been watching my Autocross videos on my laptop to try and calm my withdrawls haha. Im already conjuring up my purchases for the STI so they are at home waiting for me when i get back

Looking to pick up an enclosed car hauler and a truck when i get back so i can take the STI to the next level for autocross.

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Old 07-30-2013, 09:25 AM   #82
DannyD303
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Subscribed
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Old 07-30-2013, 02:31 PM   #83
05.STI
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^ x2

Absolutely love the car & thanks for serving!
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Old 07-30-2013, 05:52 PM   #84
Jasoncor
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Very nice journal and write ups. Looking forward to see the progress. Stay safe and subscribed
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Old 08-01-2013, 05:42 AM   #85
1FSTREX
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Thanks all. Excited to get home and start the next string of changes. Going to get the car all set up to compete in ASP in 2014.

Have a whole bunch of things planned. E85 conversion, AP V3 with E85 tune, dial in the suspension, new tires, new wheels, new seats, new harnesses, going to be some fun times in the garage!

Cheers!
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Old 11-04-2013, 03:34 PM   #86
1FSTREX
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Pic of my US Unit and the AUS unit we are station with here. Good times.
[/url]
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:03 AM   #87
DannyD303
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Old 11-13-2013, 08:57 PM   #88
blkbugeye
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*sold* 2002 WRX Sedan MBP

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1FSTREX View Post
Pic of my US Unit and the AUS unit we are station with here. Good times.
[/url]
Badass pic man!! I was out in that wonderful sandbox earlier this year. Stay safe!!
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Old 11-13-2013, 10:56 PM   #89
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So what sort of issues did you have with the lotus?
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Old 11-20-2013, 06:44 AM   #90
1FSTREX
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Alright guys, so as much as i want to go E85, I think i need to stay away from it for now. The limited E85 stations in California and where i have to drive, I would be risking it. I just rather not have to worry about that.

With that said, I had decided that i want to build my car for SM. Being in the Army i know i will never have the time to completely dedicate myself to competeing competatively in autocross. So i figured i can just keep it for fun until times change.

Finally, after all that research into E85 I am not starting over and looking into a 91 build. I still want to keep it AutoX oriented. This means i want to try and build the car/tune towards early spool. I am debating between PnP my 60k VF39 or purchasing a newer turbo and potentially having it PnP'd. I am still researching and learning about turbos but my goal with the turbo, whatever i decide, is around 320-350whp and a fast spool. I would be willing to lower my whp number in order to obtain a sub 3k full boost spool.

As supporting mods, i was looking at:
- ID 1000cc side feed to top feed conversion
- DW300 Fuel Pump
- TGV Deletes
- PnP Exhaust Manifold
- PnP Throttle Body
- Grimmspeed AOS

Thoughts? I can not do a TMIC or FMIC due to CARB laws in California, so i am stuck with my stock STI TMIC. Do you think it will be sufficient enough? Would a certain version JDM STI TMIC work better? See as it looks the same i could probably get away with it.
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Old 11-20-2013, 08:02 AM   #91
blkbugeye
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Really? I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that FMIC's are smog exempt(atleast the HKS ones anyways)
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:27 AM   #92
1FSTREX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blkbugeye View Post
Really? I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that FMIC's are smog exempt(atleast the HKS ones anyways)
I have seen internet forum rumors about this but it is not true based off what i have read in the laws and been told by the smog shops.

3 resaons for visual failure under current CA-BAR reg
a) disconnected
b) missing
c) modified

All parts that are not like/similar to OEM spec are considered 'off-road only' by the state unless verified by CARB (req CARB EO#)
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Old 11-20-2013, 05:48 PM   #93
blkbugeye
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Old 11-21-2013, 10:58 AM   #94
1FSTREX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blkbugeye View Post
I have seen that. It is a very open ended statement and i rather error on the side of caution. What i see is all Appendix G provides is guidance for SMOG techs. Therefore, all Item 4 is saying is that they do not have to look for a CARB number on a TMIC or FMIC. This however does now mean its legal, nor does it even address this issue. If it was grinded into stone then there would be an ARB Executive Order that states the changing of TMIC or FMIC on Subaurs is exempt and there would be an EO number assigned to it.

Sure you could try and argue the point and you might win with the SMOG techs but you will still be paying the $500 ticket from law enforcement.

I shot ARB an email and I am hoping i will get an email back from them. With all that said, i am considering a Grimmspeed TMIC
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Old 11-21-2013, 11:59 AM   #95
blkbugeye
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Very true, but it's i can't see why it would need an EO# since it doesn't affect emissions. Whatever, I hate the laws there, and if won't ever try to register a car there.
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Old 11-21-2013, 12:01 PM   #96
1FSTREX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blkbugeye View Post
Very true, but it's i can't see why it would need an EO# since it doesn't affect emissions. Whatever, I hate the laws there, and if won't ever try to register a car there.
Yeah its super frustrating but it is what it is, just gotta put in the effort to find the loop holes. Since i need a larger TMIC, i am going to fight this until i get a definite answer.
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:51 AM   #97
1FSTREX
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Join Date: Mar 2006
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Still stuck in Afghanistan but been doing a little online shopping for the STI

Thanks to my sponsor www.performancedrivenparts.com for my most recent purchase of parts for my 2014 ASP Autocross build. Check these guys out for unbeatable prices!

1. Kartboy Front Shifter Bushing
2. Kartboy Rear Shifter Bushing
3. Grimmspeed Lightweight Pulley
4. Grimmspeed Pulley Tool
*Click items to be taken to PDP's Vendor post.

Also picked up a Cobb Double Adjustable shifter during their ultra rare sales event.

Missing my car, can't wait to get out on the track.
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Old 12-17-2013, 08:37 AM   #98
1FSTREX
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Join Date: Mar 2006
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Location: Vacationing in Afghanistan
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Some random pictures from my deployment since i don't have any car pictures to post

Where the magic happens


Selfie


Take your Subaru here to get service and washed:


Finally left Afghanistan for this Winter Wonderland
It's Manas Air Fore Base in Kyrgyzstan.


But it was all worth it for these


Picture my family sent me of all the boxes thus far that have been piling up. To say the least, the STI has a lot of work to be done to it when i get home.
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Old 12-18-2013, 08:49 PM   #99
kbobomber89
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Kcco!
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Old 12-29-2013, 09:22 PM   #100
1FSTREX
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Member#: 109348
Join Date: Mar 2006
Chapter/Region: BAIC
Location: Vacationing in Afghanistan
Vehicle:
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So finally got some time to start installing some of the parts i had piling up in my house while i was in Afghanistan. Unfortunately I dont have a garage right now and all my tools are in my storage unit; luckily my brother let me borrow his garage.


Since steering rack upgrades are not legal in autocross, I decided to try out a new wheel. I was lucky enough to find a DAMD Flat Bottom steering wheel for me STI and jumped on it. Was a little nervous removing the airbag but all turned out well. Car needs to go in for a new alignment so I will have them double check to make sure the wheel is 100% straight and correct anything that is off.
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